Timothy Cheek’s revised edition of Singing in Czech: A Guide to Czech Lyric Diction and Vocal Repertoire, with its accompanying audio accessible online, builds on the original pioneering work of 2001 that set “a new and very welcome high standard for teaching lyric diction,” according to Notes: The Journal of the Music Library Association. It offers users updated information, important clarifications, and expanded repertoire in a more accessible, easier to use format.
Singing in Czech is divided into two parts. Using IPA, the first part takes the reader systematically through each sound of the Czech language, enhanced by recordings of native Czech opera singers. Chapters cover the Czech vowels, consonants, rules of assimilation, approaches to singing double consonants, stress and length, Moravian dialect, and an introduction to singing in Slovak. Fine points of formal pronunciation have been clarified in this revised edition.
In the second part, Cheek offers a thorough overview of Czech art song, expanded from the first edition. Texts to major song literature and opera excerpts by Smetana, Dvo?ák, Janá?ek, Martin?, and Haas, with timings, editions, word-for-word translations, idiomatic translations, and IPA transcriptions follow. In this revision, Cheek has included additional cycles by Dvo?ák and Martin?, and two new chapters on Czech female composers Vít?zslava Kaprálová and Sylvie Bodorová.
This revised edition of Singing in Czech is useful for all those who are interested and engaged in the performance of the rich Czech vocal repertoire.